African violets are beautiful flowering plants native to Kenya and Tanzania. These attractive violets are great to look at.
The lush rosette of velvety leaves hidden under a mound of intensely colored blossoms attracts many to the growing and caring for African-violets.
There are thousands of varieties of this popular house plant, so it is not difficult to become an African violet enthusiast.
When repotting older plants, adding to your collection or growing these beauties for the first time, wick watering African Violets keeps plants healthy, firm and crisp.
The Wick Watering African Violets Method
Wick watering, takes the care and worry out of watering African Violet plants.
By means of a wick, the plant takes up water when it needs it and can be left on its own for two weeks or more.
The wick can also carry liquid fertilizer to the plant while providing water.
This easy way for watering plants will enable you to go off for a week-end or a few days without worrying about what will happen to them at home.
Materials Needed To Setup A Wick Watering Pot
The materials needed to make a wicking pot are readily available:
- A small piece of net or screening cut to fit over the hole in the bottom of the pot
- Small nylon cord (such as clothesline, number 24 weight about 6 inches long)
- Flower pot, 4” inch diameter
- Discarded margarine tub or deli container with plastic lid
- African Violet Potting soil – add 50% extra perlite to the potting mix when wick watering
Violets need repotting when they develop long necks.
This happens in older plants where the main stem has elongated into a coarse unattractive trunk with leaves and blossoms near the top.
- Cut the whole plant off at the base near the soil line.
- Remove the extra leaves around the bottom until you have a nice looking plant or “crown.”
- Discard the old root system.
- Pick off any blossoms so the plant can use its strength making new roots instead of blooms.
- Scrape the neck with a clean knife to remove the old scales.
Time To Repot
- Place the screening in the bottom of pot over the hole and run the cord halfway through it.
- The screening prevents soil from leaking out.
- Next put in1/4″ of charcoal chips, then an African Violet potting soil about halfway up.
- Lay the cord across it.
- Add more soil to nearly fill the pot
- Make an indentation and center the plant in it
- Finish by tamping the soil around the plant to anchor it
- Pin the plant in place with toothpicks to hold it until roots form.
- Cut two holes in the plastic lid one larger at the side for filling purposes and a smaller one at the center for the wick.
- Now set the newly potted plant on top of the lidded tub.
- Fill the plastic tub and let the wick draw water up to the plant.
- As needed add soluble fertilizer to the water.